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Thursday, May 20, 2010

Rabia's Surprise Packet!!!

Remember how our classroom looked like back in school? Colourful, vibrant, lively, with loads of our art work pasted on the walls and teachers appreciating how well we’ve done!

Well, every one’s classroom doesn’t look the same as yours and mine. It could be a scary, prison-like, torture room with teachers’ having a don’t-you-dare-speak-a-word attitude. The government schools usually foster such classrooms without even realising the damage they’re causing to the young pupil’s career and at times, damaging their personalities for lifetime!

One person has taken a step to tackle this serious situation. She’s committed to bring a change. Change: in government classrooms, in teachers’ attitude and most of all – Introduce English Language in the grey-and-white environment! She’s become a true "ACTIVE CITIZEN" after attending British Council's Active Citizens workshops.

Rabia Shaukat, a young girl from Lahore, is an emerging entrepreneur who’s venturing to begin a “Surprise Packet Company”. As the name suggests, it’s a company that generates surprises! We all like surprises, don’t we? Except that her surprises aren’t materialistic. Her surprises focus more on improving the quality of life that people in her surrounding live.

Rabia is worried about the fate of the students studying in government schools; therefore she has decided to visit Boys High School, Township regularly. Her surprise for the pupil is: introduce them to a foreign language called “English”.

“I’ve always observed the students graduating from the government schools. No wonder, these kids are left behind in today’s cut-throat competitive world as they hardly know English and have no hands-on information about the current economical and political situation of the world,” Rabia comments.

Rabia indulged in a chain of conversations with the school’s headmaster, who, after numerous explanations got convinced that what she’s doing is for the betterment of his pupil.

Rabia started by observing every English Language lecture given in the school and gives feedback to the teachers. She advises them on bringing creativity and innovativity to English Language teaching; encouraging teachers to speak English as much as possible.

Simultaneously, Rabia’s also trying to introduce new English Language books in the current curriculum so the kids can have a variety of books to read from and improve their English.

Though, it has been less than a month that she’s initiated this, her surprise is already gaining momentum. The teachers’ and headmaster look pretty content with the way she’s bringing this commendable change. But most of all, the pupil seem to enjoy it.

“Kids are enjoying learning English Language. They are eager to read English books though are a bit shy in speaking English. I’m endeavouring to improve their writing, reading, listening and speaking skills. They are very bright, I’m sure that correct guidance will make them future Active Citizens of Pakistan,” Rabia replied when I asked her about the impact of the work that she’s doing.

Indeed, working selflessly for the prosperity of this country’s future is a praiseworthy effort. I’m convinced that she has proved to be a ray of hope for those who were patiently waiting for an opportunity to knock their doors.
I wish her all the best for future efforts!

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